Friday, August 31, 2018

Devotionals for the Heart: Newness


The Newness of You

A devotional by Glynis Becker

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” –2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)

I believe in the new creation that Christ is working in me. I believe in my head that I have been made new, that I am different than I was before I began a life that followed Christ and allowed the Holy Spirit to guide, direct, and comfort me.

But sometimes I have a hard time believing it in my heart.

I’ve been a believer for a long time. I grew up in a Christian home. I’ve been in church nearly every Sunday of my entire middle-aged life. I accepted Jesus and made a commitment to him when I was just seven years old. And although my parents will confirm that I wasn’t a perfect teenager, I never felt the need to rebel against the confines of my faith during those tough years that stretch us out into the adult we will become. I’ve pretty much been the poster child for the phrase “Good Girl” my whole life.

And it might sound surprising, but I often have to remind myself that this is not a bad thing.

Here’s what I mean: Because I never seemed to stray very far from the path Christ has for me, I am easily lulled into believing two very dangerous lies. The first lie is that I have somehow saved myself. And the second is that I didn’t need saving in the first place.

Why are these lies so dangerous? Because if left unchecked they lead to self-righteousness toward people and apathy toward the great gift we’ve been given. If we begin to believe that we have the ability to save ourselves, then we also easily find ourselves looking down on others. How arrogant and unloving we can become if we think others should be saving themselves as well!

And what happens if we get the idea that we didn’t need to be saved in the first place? We will lose the awe and wonder and reverence and weight of the enormous sacrifice God gave us through Jesus. May we never take that for granted!

Since the beginning of creation, God has been doing new and miraculous things in the lives of His people. Do you remember what He told the Israelites?

“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” –Isaiah 43:18-19 (NIV)

I believe that promise still holds true for us. Isn’t it exciting to think that God is at work all over the world and in each of our lives all the time?

So, do you feel new today? Maybe not, but remind yourself that God is constantly—daily, hourly, and moment-by-moment—working in your life, if you give him the space to do so. You can and should be different today, even in a tiny way, than you were yesterday.

And remember to have grace with those around you, as Christ works in their lives as well.

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” 
–Galatians 2:20 (NIV)

My Prayer: Thank you, Father God, for the gift of a new heart, a new mind, and a new purpose that mirrors Jesus’ redemptive work in this world. Let me see with fresh eyes the gift you have given me and help me lovingly share that gift and that grace with those around me. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.

~*~
Author Bio: 
Glynis Becker writes devotions and inspirational fiction, hoping someday to have a published novel on her resume. She has co-written several screenplays, including Sinking Sand, which will be available in mid-September 2018 on DVD and digital streaming. 

Glynis, whose childhood was spent all over the country as an Air Force brat, has called South Dakota home for many years, along with her husband and two teenage children. 

When she’s not writing or reading, she is watching more television than she should and crocheting. 

You can find her at www.glynisbecker.com.

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